MILAN, 28 June (APM) - Bracco Imaging has agreed to buy the UK's Blue Earth Diagnostics from Syncona for $450 million to expand its precision medicine and personalised diagnostics portfolio, Il Sole 24 Ore reported on Thursday.
The Oxford-based firm, which expects around $140 million revenues in 2019, will retain its own management and name, the paper said.
One of the highlights of the deal is Blue Earth's Axumin (fluciclovina 18F), an innovative molecular imaging agent which is approved in the U.S. and Europe for PET imaging for patients suspected of having relapsed after prostate cancer therapy.
Bracco Imaging's chief executive, Fluvio Renoldi, was quoted as saying Blue Earth's innovative products and pipeline will significantly enhance the Italian firm's portfolio in precision medicine and personalised diagnostics, while expanding its range of nuclear oncology imaging solutions in the urology segment and other specialties.
Blue Earth Diagnostics's CEO, Jonathan Allis, described the acquisition by Bracco Imaging "as a validation of the proven success of Axumin in prostate cancer, its potential uses beyond prostate cancer, and the PSMA pipeline under development."
Il Sole 24 Ore noted prostate cancer is the most common tumour in men with more than 170,000 new cases in the U.S in 2019.
Pfizer's head in Italy re-elected to head Farmindustria's prevention group
Pfizer's head in Italy, Massimo Visentin, has been re-elected to be the head of the prevention group inside the pharma association Farmindustria, according to Wednesday’s Il Sole 24 Ore.
Visentin welcomed the decision to reappoint him for another two-year term until 2021 and highlighted the importance of prevention in public health.
He noted the role of vaccines and antibiotics in counteracting health emergencies related to infectious diseases. Vaccination also contributes significantly to avoiding antimicrobial resistance, he added.
Visentin said that one euro invested in vaccination saves up to €16 in missed treatment costs and a €28 euros considering the resources generated by healthy people.
EMA downsized, reducing activity following Amsterdam move
The European Medicines Agency has been forced to downsize and reduce some of its activities after its move to Amsterdam, Quotidiano Sanità reported on Thursday.
The online publication said meetings of the EMA's board last week had highlighted uncertainty about the number of personnel who will finally move to the new headquarters in the Dutch capital. It is estimated that the EMA could end up with between 20-25% fewer staff.
This will mean that many activities may have to be suspended, including the development of guidelines and meetings of work groups. EMA is said to be concerned because the reduced staffing is coming at a time when the workload is increasing.
Amgen Italy appoints new head
Amgen Italy has appointed a new chief, Libero reported on Monday. Soren Giese will take over from André Dahinden, who has occupied the position for the last two years, at the beginning of July, the paper said.
Giese joined Amgen in 2016 becoming executive director of business strategy and commercial operations in the intercontinental region, and later working as general manager of the subsidiary in Colombia. Giese had previously worked for Bristol-Myers Squibb in the U.S. and Mexico.
Italy is Amgen's third largest market in Europe and its sixth globally with around 300 employees.
Anti-vaccination group to hold press conference in parliament
An anti-vaccination group is to hold a press conference in parliament, Il Fatto Quotidiano reported on Wednesday.
Corvelva, which campaigns for freedom for individuals to choose if they or their families will be vaccinated, received an invitation to the chamber of deputies from a former member of the governing Five Star Movement, the paper said.
Sara Cunial has since been expelled from the party and now sits in parliament with a group of cross-party politicians.
Two opposition parties, Partito Democratico and Forza Italia, have called for the meeting at the chamber of deputies to be banned. However, parliamentary rules do not allow this and the only way to stop the meeting is to have the invitation withdrawn, the paper said.
Hospital pharmacists launch platform to combat drug shortages
The hospital pharmacists' society, Sifo, has launched a platform to combat shortages which are often caused by parallel trade, Quotidiano Sanità reported on Thursday.
The initiative was announced at a conference in Bari on drugs distribution. Sifo’s president, Simone Serao Creazzola, said that pharmacists working in national health service are constantly having to find new strategies to deal with shortages.
These include identifying alternative products to replace ones which are running short and managing applications to have drugs imported from other markets where they are still available.
Now a web portal, Drughost, has been launched to allow registered users to report shortages. The flow of data generated will be used within the pharmacy system to manage shortages and supply problems more effectively, Quotidiano Sanità said.